Ten Vegan Archetypes of Schitt’s Creek
Once you see the characters as vegans you’ve known, you’ll never be able to un-see them…
This weekend, Schitt’s Creek fans got the great news that Netflix was releasing the last season of the beloved Canadian show a few days early. After cleaning up at the Emmys for their fantastic writing, acting and, well, everything, I thought there was no better time to celebrate this amazing ensemble and show. I haven’t watched the new season yet but can’t help but see archetypal vegans I recognize in some of the Schitt’s Creek characters I love. While none of the characters from the Creek are vegan, it’s not hard to imagine the kind of vegans they be if they were.
The Neurotic Vegan
David Rose is the kind of vegan who accidentally had dairy cheese two years ago and he swears he can still taste it even after he got a bespoke tongue scraper. If you’re a server, David has a lot of questions for you. Like a lot. You might think he’s persnickety but he doesn’t mean to be. He’s just careful because if you think you are going to cook his pristine vegan food on a contaminated surface, you’re wrong — to quote his sister Alexis, “Ew!” — and he knows every potentially problematic micro-ingredient there is. While David can be a bit high-maintenance, he means well, and if you’ve developed an artisanal cashew cheese that has been slow-fermented using the finest cheese-making methods, he will be one of your first cheerleaders.
The Normie Vegan
David’s fiancé Patrick is, seriously, the nicest guy you will ever meet and all he wants to do is normalize veganism. Unlike his other half, Patrick doesn’t want a big fuss to be made over him; he just wants to be. Don’t mistake his reticence for not being proud of being vegan, though. He is a proud vegan. He’d just rather not make a big deal about it. When he eats out with David, David won’t try his food because he thinks Patrick hasn’t been specific enough with the server. While Patrick’s partner has a shopping list that is a tad more specific (and expensive) than his own and David is more about painstakingly artful vegan charcuterie than burgers on the grill, they find great balance with each other.
The Business Vegan
Johnny Rose may have some outdated notions about the world and may not be current with the latest trends and technologies but he is an optimistic hard worker. Johnny is more about custom-made jackets with pocket squares than animal rights t-shirts but he knows his place as a vegan and if you ever want your stodgy parents to understand that you’re not on a “crazy diet,” you might want to introduce them to a Johnny Rose type to gain their trust. Johnny is your man for anyone needing help finding ties without silk and business shoes without leather. He will also always donate to your non-profit, that is if his accountant hasn’t absconded with all his money.
The Dramatic and Fancy Vegan
Rose family matriarch Moira is the kind of vegan who was born to organize galas, fashion shows, film screenings and book release parties, especially if she can shine a little spotlight on herself in the process as emcee. Confident, a little boozy, with a curiously ambiguous accent and more than a touch of Norma Desmond in her, Moira doesn’t let reality get between her and a perfectly curated, if obscure, vocabulary. She also knows all the best caterers; she can always pull some strings to get discounts for your event. Be aware that Moira types will always send out at least one big, dramatic message at 3:00 AM to the organizing committee that she is quitting but, never fear, it will always blow over. She won’t even remember it in the morning. Compliment her shoes, indulge her penchant for improbable storytelling, always tell her if one of her wigs is askew, and you will have a powerful partner in your fundraising endeavors. Expect Moira to be late to meetings — she loves to make an entrance — and perhaps a little hungover but also expect her to give it her all.
The Vegan Influencer
It’s easy to misjudge Alexis. No biggie, she’s used to it. Actually, it’s her ability to sneak in, disarm and surprise people that is her greatest superpower. Alexis may sound like a name-dropping Nickelodeon teen actress from the Valley who got lost on her way to Coachella but she has a surprising capacity to grow and she is always on the lookout for and willing to use her ample platform to promote up-and-coming eco-designers, vegan techno bands, hair and skin product innovators and cutting-edge water kefir developers. These conscious collabs are the bread-and-butter of the branded Alexis Rose Experience, but they allow her to shine a stealthy spotlight on the do-gooder charities closest to her heart. Alexis is an unapologetic bunny hugger — she just loves their little button noses — and she always finds herself resisting the urge to dress up her team of adopted chihuahuas but don’t you dare underestimate her. There is a method to the madness but I think we can all agree that a little bit (of) Alexis goes a long way. She can’t help it. She’s #blessed in that way.
The Animal Rescuer Vegan
Alexis’ often bemused but altogether dedicated fiancé, Ted uses his veterinary background to advocate for animals. Having Instagram-friendly good looks to match those of his flighty inamorata, Ted can make extra inroads as a voice for the animals, even if he does occasionally feel like a third wheel to Alexis’s selfie stick. Ted believes in the power of a well-constructed Change.org petition and he is equally comfortable spending his free time passing out vegan lit as he is protesting the rodeo, though he does occasionally feel a little sleep-deprived due to all the special needs animals he doesn’t have the heart to kick out of his bed.
The Crusty Vegan (???)
No one is actually sure if Roland is vegan but somehow he always shows up at the vegan potluck and he’ll have brought some dumpster-dived bread or a half-eaten bag of tortilla chips or something equally sketchy so whatever. The rumor is he was a first generation monkeywrencher or a FBI snitch. One or the other.
The Vegan Welcoming Committee
Jocelyn takes some of the heat off her husband Roland by being so friendly, warm and helpful. She crochets sweaters for rescued chickens in her spare time and is always happy to volunteer her a cappella singing troupe the Jazzagals to any fundraiser, though she does frequently need to remind Moira that not every song should turn into a scatting opportunity for her. Moira has a worthy adversary in her, though, because while the perfectly-coiffed Jocelyn may give the impression of being a lightweight, she is as tenacious as they come. When she’s not checking Moira, Jocelyn is always lending out cookbooks, taking people on grocery shopping trips to learn how to find vegan food and just generally making herself useful. Don’t get in the car with her after Roland uses it, though, because there is no air freshener powerful enough to stand up to that.
The Back-to-Basics Vegan
Oh, Stevie. Don’t let her acerbic dryness and lack of demonstrativeness intimidate you; it’s actually her way of protecting her tender, gentle heart. Stevie has been vegan forever and she doesn’t have much need for all the glam and fuss of a Moira or an Alexis, but she does understand that her down-to-earth approach wasn’t exactly drawing people to veganism in droves. (As an introvert, this is okay by her but she does understand that the bottom line is what makes life better for the animals.) You will not see Stevie at galas and big fundraisers, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t care: she just would rather roll up her sleeves and volunteer at sanctuaries, not pose for selfies there. If you can win her trust, a Stevie Budd vegan will be an amazing mentor for you. Just don’t come for her flannel. Or make her feel awkward. (Pro tip: She always feels awkward.)
The Networking Vegan
While Alexis may be all about the social network, realtor Ray is all about old-school networking. Ray is the guy who organizes every dine-out in town, loves to wheel-and-deal for special pricings and perks, and thinks getting people together over new vegan options at the local brewery is the best form of advocacy there is. Ray will slip his business card into your hand as you shake hands, he’s that slick, but because he’s so earnest and charming, you can’t get mad about it. Don’t be surprised if you get on his mailing list within minutes of meeting.